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New Jersey Car Insurance Laws and Requirements (Updated September 2022)

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Insurify partners with top insurance companies and is a licensed agent in all 50 states. However, the insurance experts writing our content operate independently of our partners. Check out reviews from over 3,000 satisfied customers, how we make money, our data methodology, and our editorial standards.
Jennifer Pendell

By: Jennifer Pendell

Edited by Jackie Cohen

Updated June 17, 2022

New Jersey law dictates the minimum requirements for insurance coverage that all drivers must carry. All drivers in New Jersey must hold liability coverage and personal injury protection. Additionally, drivers can pick from a long list of additional coverages for added protection.

Quick Facts

  • Car insurance is required by law in New Jersey.
  • Drivers in New Jersey must carry liability and PIP coverages.
  • If caught driving without insurance, drivers face $300 to $5,000 in fines and potential jail time.

Minimum Car Insurance Requirements in New Jersey

New Jersey auto insurance coverage options are different from other states. New Jersey drivers can choose between a basic policy and a standard policy, both of which are available from many different insurance companies. Here’s how they’re different[1]:

The basic policy doesn’t include bodily injury liability, but you can add up to $10,000 in coverage per accident. It includes $5,000 per accident for property damage liability and $15,000 per person, per accident, in personal injury protection (PIP), or up to $250,000 in PIP for certain injuries like brain and spine injuries and disfigurement.

The standard policy includes $15,000–$250,000 in bodily injury coverage per person and $30,000–$500,000 per accident, $5,000–$100,000 or more in property damage liability, and $15,000–$250,000 in personal injury protection. PIP, which pays for 80 percent of medical treatment after an automobile accident, is required because New Jersey is a no-fault state.

Why is car insurance required in New Jersey?

Auto insurance protects drivers from financial liability in the event of an accident. Depending on a policy’s specific coverage limitations, car insurance may cover everything from vehicle damage to medical bills.

Bodily Injury Liability

Bodily injury liability is part of your liability car insurance coverage. If you cause an accident, this coverage will help cover the other party’s medical expenses. This type of coverage will not cover your own medical expenses for injuries sustained in a car accident you caused. Bodily injury liability coverage is not required in New Jersey, but it’s highly encouraged.

Property Damage Liability

Property damage liability is the other half of your liability car insurance. It covers repair costs and damage expenses to the other cars involved in an accident you caused. This coverage does not cover damage to your own car in an accident you were at fault for. Property damage liability coverage is required in New Jersey.

Personal Injury Protection

Personal injury protection, also known as PIP, covers medical bills, lost wages, and replacement services for you and other members of your household if you’re injured in a car accident. PIP provides coverage regardless of who is at fault for an accident. Personal injury protection is required in New Jersey.

See More: Cheap Car Insurance in New Jersey

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Is state minimum car insurance enough in New Jersey?

The minimum required car insurance coverage in New Jersey provides drivers with a solid foundation of auto insurance coverage, but it may not be enough for everyone. The basic auto insurance policy, for example, doesn’t even include bodily injury liability insurance

Optional Car Insurance Coverage for New Jersey

New Jersey drivers who want to be protected in any situation should consider bolstering the minimum car insurance coverage with the following supplemental car insurance coverages:

Collision Coverage

Collision coverage covers damages to your car after a collision with another vehicle or object. If your vehicle is a total loss, collision coverage will reimburse you for the actual cash value of your vehicle. This is a great addition to the required property damage liability coverage in New Jersey, which applies only to the damages to the other driver’s vehicle.

Comprehensive Coverage

Complementing your collision coverage, comprehensive insurance covers damage to your vehicle that occurs during an event that is not a collision with another vehicle or object. This may apply in situations of vandalism, theft, weather damage, or a run-in with an animal. Adding comprehensive and collision coverage together creates a full-coverage car insurance policy.

Uninsured/Underinsured Motorist Coverage

If an uninsured (or underinsured) driver causes an accident and you suffer bodily injury, uninsured motorist coverage will cover your medical expenses. If the at-fault driver surpasses their bodily injury liability coverage limits, your underinsured motorist coverage will cover the rest of your medical expenses.

Other Supplemental Coverage

Comparing car insurance policies? Consider getting one with rental car reimbursement. This benefit helps pay for a rental car if your car is damaged in an accident and has to be repaired. Some policies also include roadside assistance, which helps cover the cost of towing your car to a repair shop.

See More: Average Cost of Car Insurance in New Jersey

Penalties for Driving Uninsured in New Jersey

It is illegal to drive in New Jersey without the minimum car insurance coverage. If you’re caught driving without proof of insurance for your motor vehicle, the penalties can be severe. They include[2]:

  • A fine of $300 to $1,000 for a first offense, plus community service
  • A driver’s license suspension for up to a year
  • Fines of up to $5,000, plus 14 days in jail and community service for subsequent offenses

See More: High-Risk Car Insurance in New Jersey

Minimum Requirements for High-Risk Drivers in New Jersey

High-risk drivers not only face higher auto insurance rates but may also have to jump over additional hurdles to get back on the road. For example, someone convicted of a DUI who has their license suspended may have to install an ignition interlock device in their vehicle and may even go to jail.

People who have simply racked up too many points for moving violations also face penalties that can stand in the way of driving, including having their license suspended. Taking driver improvement classes is one way to remove points.

More Information for High-Risk Drivers in New Jersey

DUI Insurance in New Jersey

SR-22 Insurance in New Jersey

Cheapest Minimum Car Insurance in New Jersey

Car insurance companies weigh different factors to determine what to quote drivers on their car insurance policies. Minimum coverage generally means lower car insurance rates. It also means low coverage limits, which may cost you if you’re ever involved in an accident. Here are the cheapest car insurance quotes for minimum coverage in New Jersey.

Insurance CompanyMonthly Quote for Minimum Coverage
Travelers$150
Progressive$178
Nationwide$214
Liberty Mutual$231
Bristol West$254
Disclaimer: actual quotes may vary based on the policyholder's unique driver profile.

How to Find Cheap Car Insurance in New Jersey

It’s easy to find cheap car insurance that meets the minimum coverage required by the New Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance. Simply compare car insurance quotes using Insurify’s user-friendly online tool and see what different insurers are charging for basic and standard policies.

Frequently Asked Questions

  • Yes. The state of New Jersey requires all drivers to choose between a basic or standard policy, which are available from many insurers in the state.

  • Yes. New Jersey is a no-fault state, and like other no-fault states, New Jersey requires drivers to carry personal injury protection coverage.

  • No. Uninsured motorist protection is not required in New Jersey, but it is a smart buy. It protects you if you’re the victim of a hit-and-run or are in an accident with someone who doesn’t have insurance.

  • Yes. Proof of insurance is required when you register a car.

  • You can find an affordable car insurance policy in New Jersey simply by comparing car insurance quotes online with Insurify. It couldn’t be easier to find a policy that fits your lifestyle—and your budget.

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  • Data scientists at Insurify analyzed over 40 million auto insurance rates across the United States to compile the car insurance quotes, statistics, and data visualizations displayed on this page. The car insurance data includes coverage analysis and details on drivers' vehicles, driving records, and demographic information. With these insights, Insurify is able to offer drivers insight into how their car insurance premiums are priced by companies.

Jennifer Pendell
Jennifer Pendell

Insurance Writer

Jennifer Pendell is a personal finance expert. She specializes in breaking down dense subjects to make them easier for consumers to understand, with a particular interest in homeowners, renters, and auto insurance concepts. She studied at the University of Iowa.

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Sources

  1. State of New Jersey Department of Banking and Insurance. "State Minimum Car Insurance Requirements." Accessed June 15, 2022
  2. New Jersey Legislature. "Penalties for Driving Uninsured." Accessed June 16, 2022